Osceola County Real Estate
Osceola County Cities & Municipalities
Deer Park Lake
|Land o' Lakes
Site of Illahow
Osceola County is a county rich in history and life.
Created in 1886, Osceola County is a 1,506 square mile area that serves as the south/central boundary of the Central Florida greater metropolitan area.
The city of Kissimmee, the county seat, is 18 miles due south of Orlando. Osceola's other incorporated city, St. Cloud, is 9 miles east of Kissimmee and approximately 45 miles west of the city of Melbourne on the Atlantic coast.
Osceola County has historically been known as a transportation crossroad and is currently served by the Florida East Coast, Seaboard and Amtrak railroad systems, Interstate 4 and U.S. Highways 17/92, 441, 192 and the Florida Turnpike.
The transportation network includes connections to the Orlando Beltway and Osceola Parkway, which provide access from the Florida Turnpike to Walt Disney World.
Osceola County is served by the Kissimmee Municipal Airport and is just 10 miles south of Orlando International Airport.
An urban area in the northwest quadrant dominates Osceola County's geography. This area adjoins Polk, Orange and Lake counties and includes most of Osceola's population. It encompasses the communities of Poinciana, Buenaventura Lakes, Celebration and unincorporated areas ranging from Narcoossee and Harmony in the northeast to Campbell City and Intercession City in the southwest to Deer Run and St. Cloud Manor in the southeast.
Beyond the northwest quadrant and to the south and east, with the exception of several small, rural towns such as Holopaw, Kenansville and Yeehaw Junction, ranch lands and undeveloped prairie, woods and marsh dominate Osceola County. These large regions include Deseret Ranch, owned by the Mormon Church, and a number of large, privately operated ranch and agricultural lands.
Also included are the State of Florida's wildlife management preserves at Bull Creek, Prairie Lakes and Three Lakes.
As the headwaters of the South Florida Water Management District and the Lake Okeechobee/Florida Everglades ecosystem, Osceola County is bounded by the Kissimmee River and is home to the Kissimmee Chain-of-Lakes, which includes some of Florida's finest fishing and recreational attractions.
Osceola County's economic base is dominated by tourism, serving as a gateway to Walt Disney World and other Central Florida attractions. The area's historical investments in ranching and citrus are still very strong, while light industry and service enterprises are growing.
The Osceola County courthouse was constructed in 1889 and is the oldest courthouse in continuous use in the state of Florida.
Kissimmee has a strong historical association with the Florida cattle frontier. St. Cloud's roots include a northern land baron who began a sugar plantation in 1881; however, the city's actual birth was primarily due to an early land sale organized by Union Army Civil War veterans.
The contrasting origins of Kissimmee and St. Cloud are still reflected in many ways in the background of Osceola County's present population. This includes native Floridians, a large and growing number of immigrant settlers, retirees from the north, and of course, a large and continuous influx of visitors and tourists from all over the world.
Osceola County Government is one level of government serving the residents of, and visitors to, Osceola County. It is unique and distinct from federal and state agencies and other local governments operating within the county. For instance, Osceola County Government is distinct from the two city governments and school board, each of which has its own elected officials and government.
Osceola County Government is governed by an elected Board of County Commissioners, while another segment is governed by five independently elected officials known as Constitutional Officers. These officers include the Supervisor of Elections, Property Appraiser, Tax Collector, Sheriff and Clerk of the Court.
The mission of the cities and school board in Osceola County are different than that of the county government. Cities are multi-purpose local governments providing municipal services only to the residents within their city limits.
The school board is a single-purpose government serving all county residents with one overall program.
Osceola County Government is a multi-purpose government providing different services at different levels. Osceola County Government provides municipal services to unincorporated county residents and countywide services to all residents regardless of where they may reside.
Osceola County is a charter county and an administrative subdivision of the state of Florida. The voters of Osceola County approved the county charter form of government in March 1992 and it was instituted on October 1, 1992. Under the charter, the Board of County Commissioners appoints a county manager, county attorney and a commission auditor.
The county manager is vested with a broad range of duties including managing the day-to-day operations of the county government and the formulation of an annual budget.
The county attorney provides legal counsel for the Board of County Commissioners and assists in the preparation and implementation of all ordinances, codes and regulations adopted by the Board.
The commission auditor provides the Board with reports and analysis on a variety of financial issues. This includes reviewing records and management practices to determine compliance with federal, state and local laws, regulations, policies and procedures.
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